Skip to main content
Flu and COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) Prevention Efforts Learn More - Flu and COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) Prevention Efforts

Outdoor Summer Activities for Seniors

By: Commonwealth Senior Living / 28 Jul 2023
Outdoor Summer Activities for Seniors

Getting outdoors is the best way for seniors to stay active and connected with their environment. Outside activities are greatly beneficial to seniors, adding vitality and promoting overall well-being. Activities such as walking or light gardening can promote muscle strength, flexibility, and balance crucial for maintaining mobility in older age. Additionally, experts agree that some exposure to sunlight aids in Vitamin D synthesis, essential for bone health.

Lindsay Drummond, Resident Programs Director at Commonwealth Senior Living at the Eastern Shore, shares some of the activities she organizes for residents:

Gardening in raised flower beds not only provides a low-impact physical activity but also the opportunity to tend to something and watch it grow. Growing flowers is especially satisfying for many older adults, as they stimulate both sight and smell. Gardening can also increase feelings of accomplishment by harvesting ripe vegetables or fruit.

Lindsay says, "When our residents move into our community, we complete activity assessments for each of them. This helps us learn more about each individual and what they enjoy so our team can create a program specifically for them. Here on the Eastern Shore, our residents absolutely love nature and gardening, and many have been part of the local Garden Club. We purchased garden boxes so they could continue to work in their yard even after when we welcomed them home to CSL Eastern Shore. One of our outings was to a local greenhouse where we could purchase plants. Afterward, we purchased soil and got our hands dirty when we planted. Now we sit back on our porch and watch these vegetables and flowers grow in our beautiful courtyard. Once the tomatoes were ready, we picked them from the garden box and cilantro from our Babylon Micro-Farm and made the very best, freshest homemade salsa with ingredients we grew right here in our community."

Playing cornhole outside is a fun way for seniors to socialize with others. The game is relatively low impact yet provides enough exercise to get the heart rate up and stretch muscles.

Lindsay says, "We start every day with physical activity but continue to incorporate physical activities into other programs throughout the day. Whether our residents want social interaction, to get some fresh air, or work on their arm muscles, cornhole is a great activity! There is always lots of laughter and even a little friendly competition. One of our couples who have been married for over 50 years gave the advice, "Its important to always have fun and cheer each other on!"

Chatting on the porch or patio is a great way for seniors to get some fresh air. This is especially useful if the summer weather isn't conducive to physical activity. By enjoying the view while relaxing, seniors can reap the benefits of being outside without overexerting themselves. Additionally, they can engage in meaningful conversations with friends or family members, while they stay in the same spot.

Lindsay says, "At CSL, its important to us to have programs for everyone. For our social folks, what better way to come together on a hot summer day than relaxing on our beautiful porch with friends and a refreshing popsicle? This year, we made what we named a sunrise pop which is made of pineapple, orange juice, and a little grenadine. They are a healthy snack to enjoy as we sit in our rocking chairs with friends, laughing and reminiscing about favorite summer days."

Walking outdoors is a simple, yet effective way for seniors to get moving outside. It can be adapted for different fitness levels and needs, making it accessible for nearly everyone. The best part is the scenery: by walking in different locations, seniors can enjoy views while they exercise. Some communities have walking clubs, making walking a great way to reduce any feelings of loneliness or isolation.

Bird watching is a wonderful way to spend time in nature. Seniors can enjoy bird watching from the comfort of a porch or patio. Feeding birds is another way to connect with local wildlife, bring joy, and add more purpose to each day.

Lindsay says, "Incorporating nature programs into our day can be very calming. In our Sweet Memories neighborhood, we love getting outdoors and using our gazebo for several of our programs. As we sit and relax, we listen to the sounds of nature and watch the birds visiting our feeders. Everyone loves getting to fill the feeders to watch from our gazebo as well as from their very own suite windows."

Playing outdoor nature trivia can be an enjoyable learning opportunity for seniors and a chance for them to test their knowledge of the area.

These suggestions and other activities provide ways to explore and engage in physical activity that may not be available indoors. Seniors can safely enjoy these activities by taking the necessary precautions and following best practices. With a little preparation, it can be a safe and engaging experience for everyone.

Click the button below to contact the community nearest you to learn more about their outdoor activities.

contact the community nearest me

Find more readings